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Potter Park Zoo Tiger, Liya Departs For Her New Home

Posted By : The Animal Facts Editorial Team

Date: December 29, 2020 7:35 pm

potter park zoo tiger move

Liya the Amur tiger at the Potter Park Zoo

Photo Credit: Potter Park Zoo

Liya the Amur tiger from the Potter Park Zoo in Michigan, USA will move to a new home following a breeding recommendation from the Amur Tiger Species Survival Program (SSP).  

Her new home will be another zoo accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquarium (AZA). The SSP program, managed by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), strives to maintain healthy, genetically diverse populations in accredited zoos. This requires strategic management and planning for the individual animals within the breeding population.

Liya is one of the three tiger cubs which were born at the Potter Park Zoo in 2011. Her mother and two siblings moved to other zoos during 2014. Since then Liya and her father have been the resident tigers at the Potter Park Zoo.

As tigers are solitary Liya and her father have not been in the same exhibit.

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“I was incredibly fortunate to be part of the team that hand raised Liya and her sisters,” said Annie Marcum, Carnivore and Primate Area Lead Keeper.  “It has been amazing to watch her grow and become a tiger with an amazing personality that developed trusting relationships with the animal care staff.  Experiencing Liya’s life so far has been a highlight of my career. She will be missed terribly, but we very much look forward to the next chapter in her life and the contributions she will make to the survival of her species.” 

This move provides benefits to the SSP for Amur tiger SSP but will also increase the welfare of the other big cats housed at the Potter Park Zoo. The Feline Primate Building, originally built in 1938, last underwent extensive renovations in the late 1980’s. With a cat moving out there will be more room for the other cats. This is especially beneficial for the African lions which can not go outside during Michigan's harsh winters.

Amur tigers are listed as endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. As few as 500 Amur tigers may remain in the wild. AZA accredited zoos hold an insurance population of 104 of these tigers.

Learn more about Potter Park Zoo on their website – Potter Park Zoo

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